US 8128288 B2
The Adaptable Gift Bag is a bag made of relatively opaque, stretchy material, not paper or netting, so that it can fit over various sizes and shapes of gift items and present a smooth, attractive appearance. The Adaptable Gift Bag is typically made of a single sheet of material folded over and sewn along one or two sides so that it has one open end, but in alternate embodiments it could have two open ends. The open end can be closed around the gift by gathering and tying with traditional ribbon or cord, by attaching a drawstring, or alternatively can be twisted and stretched back over the gift for a unique finished appearance. The Adaptable Gift Bag may be lined (e.g., with a different material), may include a zipper for easier removal from the gift item, and/or may include strategically placed elastic bands in its interior for a better fit (esp. at the corners). Using a shimmery, sparkly, or iridescent material provides a festive appearance for the finished gift.
1. An adaptable gift bag comprising a piece of opaque stretchy material having two opposing edges, at least one seam connecting said two opposing edges forming a bag having an interior for completely inserting a gift item therein and an exterior, wherein said bag is closed at one end and is open at the opposing, tail end, and wherein corners are formed upon the closing of said closed end and said corners are attached to each other with a piece of elastic in the interior of said bag, and wherein said tail end of said bag extends beyond said gift item to completely conceal said gift item, and is finished by a finishing treatment.
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8. A method of wrapping a gift item with an adaptable gift bag wherein said adaptable gift bag comprises a single-tail bag with one closed end made from a closely-woven stretchy material, said bag having an interior and an exterior, wherein corners are formed upon the closing of said closed end and said corners are attached to each other with a piece of elastic in the interior of said bag, comprising the steps of: inserting a gift item into said bag until said gift item rests against said closed end forming corners and is completely concealed; fitting said bag over said gift item leaving a tail end of said bag extending beyond said gift item; adjusting said gift item as necessary to smooth out said corners; and finishing said tail end of said bag with a finishing treatment.
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This application is related to and claims priority under 35 U.S.C. 119(e) to U.S. Provisional application Ser. No. 60/876,080, entitled “Adaptable Gift Bag,” filed on Dec. 20, 2006, with inventor Stacey Feeney, which is hereby incorporated by reference in its entirety.
This invention pertains generally to bags for articles and more specifically to a reusable gift bag that can adapt to various sizes and shapes of boxed or non-boxed gift items.
Traditional gift wrapping material is provided in flat sheets of paper that the gift-giver must then measure, cut, wrap around the gift item, and tape into position. The gift-giver may then finish the gift with ribbon. Not only does this operation require time and effort and generate trash (excess paper, tape, and ribbon), but the gift recipient typically generates more trash when he/she unwraps the gift and throws away the paper and ribbon that was used.
More recently, paper gift bags have been provided for gift-givers to use—eliminating the paper waste and reducing the time and effort for the gift-giver to prepare the gift. For the sake of this simplicity, “fit” has been sacrificed. Because gift bags do not fit each gift's particular size and shape, gift-givers often use several sheets of tissue paper to “wrap” the gift and/or fill up the paper bag.
There have been some prior efforts to address these problems. Specifically, U.S. Pat. No. 5,456,062 to Wechsler discloses a gift bag made from stretchable material that fits various shapes and sizes of gifts. However, Wechsler's material is a see-thru hosiery netting (and is consistently described as such throughout the entire document, including the claims), not an opaque material as is the Applicant's, and so cannot conceal the gift completely—allowing for a much narrower range of application. (Applicant's stretchy materials have a much tighter weave than netting and so offer complete concealment.) In addition, Wechsler's material does not lend itself to being finished as in the Applicant's methods—by tying bows or knots with the material itself. (Wechsler uses a ribbon or drawstring.) Also, the Applicant has identified and solved a problem that Wechsler does not address—that of the bottom corners. (Wechsler conveniently does not show the corners in her drawing figures.)
Other efforts, such as in U.S. Pat. No. 6,092,932 to Pekala et al. and U.S. Pat. No. 6,241,389 to Gilmore et al. simply disclose loose gift bags made of fabric rather than paper but which, because they are not stretchy, do not conform to the gift item's shape or offer the finishing treatments of Applicant's bag.
U.S. Pat. No. 5,743,458 to French discloses a gift wrapping made of a stretchy material, but the wrapping is not intended to cover—and does not cover—the entire gift item. French's wrapping is applied to the gift item in a different way, using elastic straps to hold the wrapping on only a part of the gift item. Even French's alternate embodiment of a sleeve of material is limited in its application. Because French wraps only cylindrical bottles, once again, she does not address the problem of corners, and does not offer finishing treatments as does Applicant.
The present invention solves the above-mentioned problems by providing a gift bag that can adapt to a gift item's shape—whether it is regular like a rectangle or cylinder or irregular like lumpy shape. The adaptable gift bag is made from a stretchy material which may be a single piece or two or more pieces fastened together (perhaps by sewing). Using a shimmery, sparkly, or iridescent material often gives a festive external appearance. A variety of finishing treatments may be applied to create unique finished gifts for any occasion, and they may be further personalized to the giver and/or the recipient with additional external decorations.
One embodiment of the invention comprises a generally rectangular piece of an opaque stretchy material having two opposing edges that are sewn together to make a seam—creating a bag shape—the gift bag. A gift item is then inserted into the bag so that it is completely concealed therein, leaving one or two tail ends extending beyond the gift item, and the tail ends are closed with any one (or more) of the various finishing treatments herein disclosed or otherwise developed. There are different possible finishing treatments for single-tail and double-tail bag configurations. Further possibilities are made available with the used of patterned, textured, or lined materials.
The objects, features, and advantages of the present invention will be apparent to one skilled in the art from reading the following description in which:
The following specification describes an adaptable gift bag. In the description, specific materials and configurations are set forth in order to provide a more complete understanding of the present invention. But it is understood by those skilled in the art that the present invention can be practiced without those specific details. In some instances, well-known elements are not described precisely so as not to obscure the invention.
Closing the tail end 28 will form outside corners 36 and 38 which correspond to inside corners 30 and 32 as shown in
Alternatively, if the tail end is twisted, the free edges 58 of the tail may be folded back over the gift item to create a unique look as shown in